Many healthcare professionals underestimate the power that LinkedIn can have for healthcare employers and job seekers. But if you want to maintain an organized record of your healthcare experience, engage in healthcare professional interaction, and learn about up and coming advances in the healthcare industry, then LinkedIn is the place for you. The first step to establishing a LinkedIn presence is, of course, creating a profile. Here is a brief guide for healthcare professionals to creating a strong and effective LinkedIn profile.
Think of it as your curriculum vitae.
A good first step is to think of your LinkedIn profile as your CV. You’ll want to include information on your education, your experience, and your accomplishments. So, as you are creating your LinkedIn profile, pull out your CV. Use it to help you fill out every pertinent section on LinkedIn, including Experience, Education, Skills & Endorsements, and Accomplishments.
Make it complete.
Make your profile as complete as you possibly can. After all, if there is anything that’s worse than not having a LinkedIn profile at all, it’s having an incomplete LinkedIn profile. Be sure to include the following at the very least:
- Full name. Include any titles, such as Jane Doe, PT, MS, SCS, ATC.
- Professional profile image. Make sure it’s recent and that it features you dressed professionally, looking confident.
- Headline. Be sure to customize it to highlight your areas of specialty. Think in terms of keywords here.
- Summary. This is a good area to briefly detail what you’re all about as a healthcare professional. You might include why you got into medicine, a brief synopsis of your background, and some of your most prominent strengths as a healthcare professional.
- Experience. This should include at least your most recent experience, with highlights of key accomplishments. Tailor the experience you include to what you want to accomplish.
- Education. How much you include will depend largely on where you are in your medical career. At the very least, you should include medical school and everything forward.
- Skills and endorsements. It can be easy to fill this section with every single skill that you can think of; try to select skills that highlight your unique skill set and specialties.
Go above and beyond.
Once you have covered the fundamentals of your profile, it’s a good idea to go back in and see where you can fill in some gaps. Adding information to these additional sections will enrich your profile significantly:
- Accomplishments. This is where you can include any awards and accolades you have received in your healthcare career.
- Certifications. The healthcare industry is a home to a great many licenses and certifications; here is a good place to record them.
- Publications. Do you have any publications in scientific or medical journals? Include them in the publications section to highlight your areas of expertise and showcase your professional accomplishments.
- Professional organizations or associations. If you are a member of a professional organization or association as a healthcare professional, you can list the name of the organization as well as the position held here.
Pay attention to detail.
Finally, there are a few last-minute details you should go over to ensure that your profile is as strong as it possibly can be. Here are a few details in particular you’ll want to pay attention to:
- Customize your headline if you haven’t already to include specific keywords your employers might be searching for.
- Customize your LinkedIn URL to include your name and make it easy to share.
- Update your contact information if necessary.
- Add a link to your website under contact information if applicable. This might be a link to a personal website, business website, or blog.
- Copy-edit your profile to catch any capitalization, spelling, and grammar errors.